Clean Install with a Full Version of Vista

ByLine
How to Do a Clean Install and Setup with a Full Version of Vista
Synopsis
This will show you how to do a clean install and setup of a Full Retail or Express installation DVD version of Vista.
How to Do a Clean Install and Setup with a Full Version of Vista



information   Information
This will show you how to do a clean install and setup of a Full Retail or Express installation DVD version of Vista.
Note   Note

  • A OEM Recovery installation DVD can only do a clean install. It is just a clone of the hard drive that will set your computer back like it was from day one. The installation process is basically the same though, but can only be reinstalled on the same computer it was originally installed on.
  • A Express or Retail Vista can be installed on any one computer at a time for as many times as you like.
  • The product key number for the Vista 32 bit version is the same one for it's 64 bit version. You can only have the Product Key activated on one computer and version of 32 bit or 64 bit Vista at a time. See: Microsoft: License Terms for Software Licensed from Microsoft
  • Sometimes people have problems installing Vista with more than 2 GB of RAM installed. If you have this problem, then you should install Vista with a maximum of 2GB of RAM installed and add the rest of the RAM after Vista is fully installed.
Tip   Tip
MINIMUM SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS FOR VISTA
NOTE:
For more information, see: Microsoft Windows Vista: Recommended System Requirements



Vista Home Basic
  • Processor: 1GHz (32 or 64 bit)
  • System Memory (RAM): 512MB
  • Hard Drive: 20GB with 15GB available for Vista
  • Video Card: 32MB Memory and DirectX 9 Support
  • DVD-ROM Drive
Vista Home Premium, Business, or Ultimate
  • Processor: 1GHz (32 or 64 bit)
  • System Memory (RAM): 1GB
  • Hard Drive: 40GB with 15GB available for Vista
  • Video Card: 128MB Memory, DirectX 9 Support with: WDDM Driver, Pixel Shader 2.0, 32bits per pixel
  • DVD-ROM Drive





STEP ONE
Installing Vista
warning   Warning
Before doing this clean install, you should download and save all of your device drivers to DVD, or some other media, to have them handy to make setting Vista back up easier.

1. Boot the computer from your Vista installation DVD.​
NOTE: Make sure that the CD/DVD drive is selected first in the boot order in the BIOS.
2. When prompted, press any key to start Vista from the installation DVD. (See screenshot below)​
NOTE: You will only have about 8 seconds to press this key. If you miss it, you will have to restart the computer.
boot-from-cd-prompt.jpg

3. Set up your language preferences and click on Next. (See screeshot below).​
Select_Language.jpg

4. Click on Install Now to start the installation. (See screenshot below)​
Install_now.jpg

5. Type in your product key number. (See screenshot below)​
6. Leave the Automatically activate Windows when I'm online box unchecked.​
NOTE: You can activate Vista later when you make sure it is running properly. (See STEP TWO step 11 below)
7. Click on Next.​
Product_Key.jpg

8. Check I accept the license terms box and click Next. (See screenshot below)​
License_Agreement.jpg

9. Click on Custom (advanced). (See screenshot below)​
Custom_Advanced.jpg

10. Select the hard drive or partition that you want to install Vista on and click on the Drive Options (advanced) link. (see screenshot below)​
NOTE: If the hard drive or partition that you have selected is unallocated, then you can just click on the Next button instead and go to step 12 since it is already empty.​
WARNING: You may not have the Drive options (advanced) option unless the installation is done at boot, and not running the installation from within your current OS.​
Drive_Options.jpg

11. Select a hard drive or partition that you want to do a clean install of Vista on, do what Drive options (advanced) you want if any, and click on the Next button when finished. (See screenshot below)​
NOTE: If you have your hard drives in a RAID setup, then connect your USB key with the RAID drivers on it, click on Load Driver, select the folder on the USB key that contains the RAID drivers to install them. Afterwards, your RAID drives will be available to select from to install Vista on.​
Tip   Tip
Drive options (advanced)
Tip   Tip

  • If you have more than one partition for a disk # (hard drive) and want to get rid of them to make that disk # one partition drive again, then select a partition with that disk # and click on the Delete option for each partition with the same disk # until there is only one "unallocated space" with that disk # left as in the screenshot below.
  • To shrink an existing partition to create another partition to install Vista on instead, select the partition you want shrink and click on the Extend option. Type in how much in MB (1 GB = 1024 MB) that you want to shrink it by. Now select the new extended partition.

Format.jpg

12. The installation of Vista will now start. Below are screen shots of what you’ll see during the install.​
Installing1.jpg Installing2.jpg
Installing3.jpg Installing4.jpg




STEP TWO
Setting Up Vista

NOTE: Now that Vista is installed, it is time to set it up.
1. Type in a user name, password, optional password hint, and select a display picture for your administrator user account. (See screenshot below)​
2. Click on Next.​
Username.jpg

3. Type in a computer name and choose a Desktop Background. (See screenshot below)​
4. Click on Next.​
Computer_Name.jpg

5. Click on Use recommended settings. (See screenshot below)​
Recommended_Settings.jpg

6. Set your time and date and time zone settings, then click on Next. (See screenshot below)​
Time_Date.jpg

7. Click on your computer's location to select it for the network location settings. (See screenshot below)​
NOTE: It is best to select Public location for the best security. If Vista doesn't detect your network connection, then you may not see this screen during setup.
Computer_Location.jpg

8. Click on Start to boot Vista for the first time. (See screenshot below)​
Start.jpg

9. Before Vista boots for the first time it must perform a performance check to see what features to turn on or off. (See screenshot below)​
Checking.jpg

10. Install all of your device drivers, then Windows Updates.​
12. When it is done, all you will need to do is to activate Vista.​
A) Right click on Computer in the Start Menu and click on Properties.​
B) Scroll down a bit and click on Activate Windows Now. (See screenshot below)​
Activate.jpg


That's it,
Shawn


 
Last edited by a moderator:
Shawn Brink

Comments

hi, the tutorial is awesome. But i have some question. How to go into bios setup so that it can boot through the dvd vista disk during installation or any other easier way? or you can press F12 while starting? i am not sure about this. Another things, how to save my other drivers like network , ethernet card, audio etc. Coz the long method will be to search internet for the driver
 
Hello Roslee, and welcome to Vista Forums.

In addition to your post here, you can get them from your computer manufacturer's website if you have a OEM computer.

You normally would need to press something like the DELETE or F12 key every second during boot to enter the BIOS. Your screen will briefly tell you what key to press to enter BIOS. If you miss the 8 second window to press the key, just restart and try again.

Hope this helps,
Shawn
 
amazing post, helped solv my problem... i thoguht id be able to just clean install over my os but aparantly not.. thanks to you i am now using my full 4GB ram :) ty so much
 
I know this will probably sound stupid but I'd like to install xp or Vista 32 as a 3rd option on a multiboot system that already has Win7 and V64. I have a few programs that just won't work with on Vista x64 not sure if they might work on Vista 32 and going to test them on a friends system but either way.

I have 2 options:

1. Install XP on a seperate partition
or
2. Install V32 on a seprate partition

My xp disc is the upgrde one. Will that see my V64 install as valid or in the alternative can I install the V32 bit version of Vista on the same system that has V64 and use the same key or would I need to buy another key?

Actually I do have one other option. I have a copy of Vista Home Premium I never used. Actually think I have 2 versions ones upgrade and then MS sent me a DVD that has SP1 in it. Would using that be a better idea?

If I use the upgrade vista dvd is there a guide I could refer to on how to do things easy?

Thanks
 
Hello Bratboy,

Yes, you should be able create a third partition to install Vista 32-bit on, just like in this tutorial, to have a triple boot system. I would not recommend installing XP though since it will most like cause a issue with the other OS's not being able to startup properly afterwards.

Hope this helps,
Shawn
 
Cool, well it turns out I actually had gotten a free Vista Premium (Ultimate)x32 version w/SP1 upgrade DVD when I bought a special Students Deal from MS. This means I do have a second unused key.

My last question is will I be able to use that key with the full 32 bit install DVD or will I have to use the upgrade DVD and do the steps for Clean install from an Upgrade route? ie: run custom install and then re-run it as an upgrade off the upgrade DVD. Be alot easier if I can just use the key with the full DVD instead and save me a few steps:party:

Hello Bratboy,

Yes, you should be able create a third partition to install Vista 32-bit on, just like in this tutorial, to have a triple boot system. I would not recommend installing XP though since it will most like cause a issue with the other OS's not being able to startup properly afterwards.

Hope this helps,
Shawn
 
Sorry Bratboy1, but you will need to use the product key number for the edition of Vista that it came with. Since it is a upgrade version, then you will need to do this tutorial instead to install it on the 3rd partition.
 
Hello, I wan't sure where to post but I was directed to this thread when I searched for help. The tutorial was a big help (was trying to install Vista Home Premium w/4 GB of RAM and a GeForce 7950 GX2 video card and wasn't able to install). Now I'm stuck again @ step 2 #9 (Windows is checking my computer's performance) on the 2nd screen, "Connect and communicate like never before ..." It's been there about an hour now.

The computer was shipped with only 1 GB of RAM, I currently have 2 GB in, should I take out 1 gig and put in the original 2x512? Would I have to reinstall from the beginning? Also, the original mouse was a gateway model USB mouse. I currently have a Razer Coperhead (USB as well). Should I put in a standard microsoft mouse? Thanks

-Sticky
 
Hello Sticky, and welcome to Vista Forums.

Yeah, an hour is to long for it to be sitting at that screen. The RAM and mouse that you have should not be of issue with this. Your installation may have just gotten corrupted somehow.

Go ahead and do another clean reinstall, but check to make sure that you do not have anything connected to the computer other than your monitor, keyboard, mouse, and internet. Sometimes when you have other devices (ex: printers) attached during installation, they can cause problems.

Hope this helps,
Shawn
 
Hello Sticky, and welcome to Vista Forums.

Yeah, an hour is to long for it to be sitting at that screen. The RAM and mouse that you have should not be of issue with this. Your installation may have just gotten corrupted somehow.

Go ahead and do another clean reinstall, but check to make sure that you do not have anything connected to the computer other than your monitor, keyboard, mouse, and internet. Sometimes when you have other devices (ex: printers) attached during installation, they can cause problems.

Hope this helps,
Shawn
Thanks for the reply. I powered down and disconnected my printer as suggested but I let it boot up normally to see if windows would start ... and it did! :) Anywho, everything seems to be working now, woot! Thanks for the help
 
Hi Brinks!

First of all, thank you for this very helpful tutorial.

I'm currently running: Toshiba Satellite, Vista Home Basic(32bit).
It is extremely slow due to excessive downloadings. I want to perform a clean installation of Vista Ultimate. However, when I insert the Vista Ultimate installation DVD to proceed with the process as instructed, it automatically booted into my current OS, i.e, Home Basic instead of this screen:



I've restarted many times to no avail. Mind you, I had previously(last week) used this DVD to installed this same OS to my sister's laptop successfully, therefore, it is in good working condition. Would you please advise me of how I can get to this first step? What key do I need to press?

Thanks in advance.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Hello AbsentMinded, and welcome to Vista Forums.

You would need to boot into you BIOS screen by pressing the key for it while your computer is starting up. Normally you will see what key should be pressed to enter BIOS for a few brief seconds at startup. Next, you will need to look through the option pages for a Boot Priority Order type listing. In this list you would select to have the CD/DVD listed first in the boot order, then usually the hard drive. Afterwards, save and exit the BIOS.

Hope this helps,
Shawn
 
Thank you so much Brink. I did press the F2 or F10 key and abled to get into the BIOS screen as you said. I just did not know what the BIOS was. Anyhow, the page you described was exactly what I encountered on my screen. I followed the steps and BINGO.

Thanks again.
 
I need to ask one more question please. I want to keep my current OS which is the Home Basic just in case I do not like the Ultimate. I plan on creating another formatted partition(D:\) to install the new Ultimate there and if I like it, I can then transfer all the needed programs/documents over(correct?) and delete the old Home Basic on C:\ drive. Now, this is where I need your expertise. If I decide to proceed with the forementioned plan and make the Vista Ultimate my one and only primary drive, is it possible to change the letter D:\ to C:\ without creating any conflicts within the saved programs/documents? If not, please advise me of the best to accomplish this task?

Thanks.
 
I need to ask one more question please. I want to keep my current OS which is the Home Basic just in case I do not like the Ultimate. I plan on creating another formatted partition(D:\) to install the new Ultimate there and if I like it, I can then transfer all the needed programs/documents over(correct?) and delete the old Home Basic on C:\ drive. Now, this is where I need your expertise. If I decide to proceed with the forementioned plan and make the Vista Ultimate my one and only primary drive, is it possible to change the letter D:\ to C:\ without creating any conflicts within the saved programs/documents? If not, please advise me of the best to accomplish this task?

Thanks.
Since Basic was installed first, there is no easy way of deleting the Basic partition and extending the Ultimate partition back into the deleted Basic partition without having to repair the boot files afterwards.

I can pretty much guarantee that you will prefer Ultimate over Basic. You might consider backing up the files/documents that you do not want to lose, and do a clean install of Ultimate instead. Afterwards, reinstall the programs and copy the file backups back. This way you will not have to go throught the trouble above with getting rid of Basic.

Hope this helps,
Shawn
 
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